At a news conference today at the National Press Club, NCL is joining several other groups to call on the federal government to get with it and make a final decision on whether or not manufacturers of beverages that contain alcohol will be required to include a standardized "Alcohol Facts" label on the products. It's something that consumer and other health groups have been calling on for years - 30, actually - the kind of standardized labeling information on beer, wine, and distilled spirits products that is now required for conventional foods, dietary supplements, and nonprescription drugs.
Over the years, there have been times where we thought we were close; back in 2005, the federal agency that handles this - the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB) - received more than 18,000 letters from consumers and groups supporting the standardized label. But more recently, the TTB seems to be regressing; in 2007 its proposed "Serving Facts" label would have left out information about alcohol content.
So, back to square one. Today's press conference should be interesting. NCL will be joined by the Consumer Federation of America, Shape Up America!, Mothers Against Drunk Driving, and the Past President of the National Medical Association. Stay tuned for more on this.